#1
ok im going to start recording but what do i need to record my guitar to my computer. I was thinking a sure sm57 for vocals and my guitar would do good. What programs do i need and what cords do i need for the mic.
#2
Read the pinned posts at the top of the board...
They should get you started. After that you can go though Tweaks Guide in my sig to see what hardware you should look into.

Basically you need a mic and interface. A 57 runs around $100 and an interface starts around $200. Audacity is a free software but is limiting. Some interfaces will come with software (sequencer) however you may want to use something else such as Reaper which is "reasonably priced".
#3
what kind of computer, if you have a mac all you need is any pedal, guitar chord, and a 1/8 inch double sided chord with a converter to go to 1/4

if you have a pedal then you only need about ten bucks
#5
Depends on how fast is your vista compared to your xp. But i recommend using your xp.
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#6
For the record, Vista isnt all that bad but you do need to choose your hardware carefully with it...

XP currently supports more drivers and will give you less problems most of the time. If you do use Vista for your DAW, be sure to go with M-Audio as your hardware. I find M-Audio makes the best drivers all around for vista right now.

If you go with XP you can pick just about any interface out there.

As to which PC you run, look at the specs and work on each machine. Figure out which runs faster and check the specs for the software and hardware you will be buying. A laptop can run great without a sequencer installed but once you install that it can grand to a halt. Most PCs should have very little problem running software these days though.
#10
you SHOULD get one, it's not a must but really helps the sound quality.
I've seen some people record by plugging a cheap mic into the mic port of the stock sound card and I have had some luck with running a small mixer into my old Dell's stock sound card however the interface without a doubt gives better quality as well as connections.

Emu 0202 and 0404 USB
PreSonus Inspire 1394
Mackie Onyx Satellite (Win. XP only)

All great units for smaller recording rigs.
#11
alright. im just on a really tight budget so im trying to save money. i have seen some for like 50 bucks.w would those be ok
#13
electric guitar yes, acoustic...not so great...
Vocals it works ok on.

The $50 interfaces work....but not great, the lowest unit I would go with would be the Toneport GX along with an XLR to TRS cable to run a mic with it...

Sometimes saving up a little more cash helps you end the end...
If you don't NEED recording gear right now, wait a while until you get some more money saved up.

Just make sure the interface has a preamp on board for your mic and instrument, if you dont have one you will need to buy one...